Formula E Racing Cars for the 2014-2015 season
The Spark-Renault SRT_01E Formula E Racing Car
The first ever FIA approved homologated Formula E (FE) racing car, the Spark Renault SRT_1E has been developed to allow advances in electric vehicles and the electric vehicle motorsport. The Formula E championship first started in 2014 with round 1 in Beijing, the final round to taking place in June 2015 in London England. Races took place around the world on street circuits including that of Monaco, France for round 7. The FE car was built by Sparks Racing Technology which is a French company led by Frédéric Vasseur. Other well-known motorsport companies such as the long running Dallara are involved in the construction of the vehicle, making components such as the carbon fibre and aluminium chassis to the same FIA regulations used in Formula One.
Electric powertrain and electronics was supplied and manufactured by McLaren Electronics Systems one of the world’s leading performance technologies for motorsport. The well-known name Williams Advanced Engineering who is part of the Williams Group famous for their Formula One achievements, supplied the 200 kW batteries that produce an equivalent of 270 brake horsepower (BHP). A five speed paddle shift sequential gearbox produced by Hewland, is incorporated into the drive system.
The integration and the integration of all the different components and manufactures will be managed by the championships technical partner Renault who are leaders in electric cars as well as experts in the motorsport industry and Formula One. Finally specially designed 18 inch treaded tyres were supplied by the official tyre partner Michelin allow for optimal performance in both wet and dry conditions, follow the link for details on Michelin Formula E tyres.
The first season of the championship or teams were supplied the all-electric racing car the Spark Renault SRT_01E. For the first season a total of 42 cars were ordered by the series, with four cars being made available to each of the 10 teams and two additional test vehicles kept aside. For the second season there will be a regulation changes allow for new powertrain manufacturers you can build electric motor, inverter, gearbox and calling systems to be integrated into the vehicles. However the batteries and chassis is will remain the same for the 2015 2016 season.
The sound of a Formula E Car
The sound of Formula E is very different to that we know from traditional motorsport racing. However the Formula E cars are far from silent and produce a more modern and up-to-date futuristic whirling sound combined with the sound of the aerodynamics of the car. The sound will produce around 80 dB at full speed which is actually more than a traditional road car at about 70 dB. Sound is an important part of electric cars and although we would all like noise pollution to be reduced in the future, people have criticised electric cars for health and safety reasons as pedestrians may not be aware of the presence of the vehicle.
The following video shows this unique sound from a Formula E car producing the sound of the future.
Safety and FIA regulations for Formula E
The FIA has strict and stringent safety regulations as in all motorsport safety remains the most important factor every aspect of the Spark Renault SRT_01E has been designed around the unique safety features. That have been integrated into the vehicle in order to achieve the 2014 2015 seasons safety standards which are the same as those used to regulate Formula One. The high safety features came into effect in the very first round in Bejing we saw a high-speed impact as Formula E drivers Prost and Heidfield collided on the final corner of the final lap.
The video showcasing the safety features of the Formula E crash at at round one in Bejing of the integral championship season, as Prost and Heidfield crashed.
Five main safety points
- 1.Front end & rear roll hoop, impact structures & monocoque push tests
- 2.FIA standards including: front, side, rear & steering column impact tests to be complete
- 3.Fire Extinguisher system (electronically operated)
- 4.Anti-intrusion survival cell protection panel tests
- 5.Wheel retainer safety cable tests
Formula E class specification 2014 2015 Season
- 1.Length: 5000mm
- 2.Width: 1800mm
- 3.Height: 1250mm
- 4.Width Track: 1300mm
- 5.Ride Height: 75mm
- 6.Weight (inc driver): 896kg (batteries 320kg)
- 1.Max power: 200kw = 270bhp (During practice and qualifying)
- 2.Power-saving: 150kw = 202.5bhp (During race)
- 3.FanBoost (during race-only): Temp increases to 180kw = extra 40.5bhp (During race max 5 seconds)
- 1.Acceleration: 0 - 100 km/h (0-62mph) in 3 s
- 2.Top speed: 225 km/h = 140mph
Chassis/ Survival cell
- 1.Carbon/aluminium or kevlar honeycomb structure
- 2.Paddle-shift five-speed sequential gearbox
- 3.No variations on gear ratios
- 1.Duel hydraulic systems, operated by the same pedal
- 2.Materials can be chosen, callipers and pistons must be circular.
- 3.Callipers must be made from ali alloy.
- 1.MGU by McLaren max 2 allowed.
- 2.Only linkable to rear axle
- 3.No traction control
Rechargeable Energy Storage System (RESS)
A RESS is a system designed to propel the car via the electric motor. In order to comply they must meet the following criteria:
- 1.FIA Standard approved.
- 2.No lighter than 200kg for battery cell or capacitors.
- 3.Cells must be of UN Transportation Standards.
- 1.Double steel wishbones with twin dampers, and torsion bar suspension in the front & spring suspension at the rear.
- 2.The ride height can be adjusted, along with camber and toe
- 3.Dampers and anti-roll bar are adjustable.
Tyres & Wheels
- 1.18 inch treaded Michelin tyres for wet/dry tracks.
- 2.O.Z. Racing magnesium rims, 260mm wide at the front and 305mm wide at the rear.
Find full race reports from the 2014-2015 seasons here.